In two online petitions, over one million people (1,033,000 at this date) have signed up to seek justice for Cecil. In addition, over £230,000 has been donated to the University of Oxford project (WildCRU) which was engaged in studying Cecil’s behavior until it was brutally terminated by Walter Palmer.
In the first petition, over 140,000 signatures have been gathered to urge the US government to send Palmer to Zimbabwe to face justice in the criminal courts of that country. The petition requests that Secretary of State John Kerry and Attorney General Loretta Lynch to extradite Palmer. We know that petitions over 100,000 have to receive a response from the government. Josh Earnest, the White House spokesman, has said that it is for the Justice Dept. to respond to an extradition order from Zimbabwe. So far there has been no extradition request.
At present Zimbabwean officials have asked to speak with Palmer. As far as I am aware, US Fish and Wildlife Service are still trying to trace Palmer to interview him.
“We ask Dr Palmer or his rep to contact USFWS immediately.”
There is a large protest outside, and on the grounds of, Palmer’s workplace which is to be policed, I understand.
The other petition on the Petition Site demands justice for Cecil the lion in Zimbabwe. It has gathered 892,247 signatures at the date of this post and climbing rapidly. The target is 1 million and I am sure they will achieve it soon.
The signatories come from across the world, from many countries such as the Netherlands, Poland, UK, Sweden, France, Italy, Spain, Brazil, India, Belgium. Emma Stiten aged 10 from Belgium writes:
“I am only 10 years old and I love animals. I really don’t want to grow up in a world where animals are killed for fun or trophies. Cecil’s head should still be on his shoulders, not on some imbecile’s wall!”
An interesting observation about this petition is that there are relatively very few signatories from America. I only saw about ten out of around the latest 300. That is about three percent of the total on that sample. Most people who have signed this petition live in Europe.
Perhaps that tells us something about the perceptions of people. Is it true that America’s capital, Washington is “seized with dismay at what America has become” as highlighted by Cecil’s killing (source: Times journalist Justin Webb). There appears to be conflicting opinion on this event in America. Donald Trump, the Republican presidential contender, supports Walter Palmer. He said:
“My sons love to hunt. They are great marksmen, great shots an they love it. I love golf.”
He puts golf and the hunting of animals for pleasure on the same footing. They are just different aspects of human pleasure to him.
Others have turned Cecil’s killing into a war-like discourse:
“Oh, so you care more about a lion than aborted foetuses.”
The shooting of this lion has generated more newspapers columns than anything else.
Justin Webb believes that Walter Palmer is a symptom of decay in America. He writes that wealthy dentists with time on their hands used to be volunteer firemen or school mentors rather than travelling to Africa to kill big game from pleasure. I don’t agree with him. Is America still a country where dreams and aspirations can be fulfilled? I believe the 2nd Amendment and the popularity of guns in the US is a factor.
Incidentally, after Palmer had killed Cecil with the assistance of others, he requested to kill a bull elephant with tusks that weighed over 65 pounds but they were unable to provide an elephant big enough so he went home. He appears only to get pleasure from killing the biggest animals he can find. I think he must have some sort of mental illness.
Please comment on Facebook to spread the word. Please click “Also post on Facebook”. Thanks: